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Jailed Activist Yunus Laments Separation In Letter To Husband

  • RFE/RL's Azerbaijani Service

BAKU -- Jailed Azerbaijani human rights activist Leyla Yunus says she fears she will never be reunited with her husband and daughter.

In a letter to her husband, Arif Yunus, who is also in pretrial detention but is being held separately, Yunus said "it is frightening that we will not be together."

Leyla and Arif Yunus were arrested last summer and charged with treason and spying for Armenia. They deny guilt and say the cases are politically motivated.

In the letter, made public on March 7, the 59-year-old Yunus compared herself and her husband to with Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn and Varlam Shalamov, who survived years in prison camps and wrote about their experiences. But she added that they were in their twenties when they were jailed.

Yunus predicted she and her husband will face "circus" trials later this year and receive 10-15 year sentences.

"Arif, my dear! We have been together 37 years. It is so hard to be without you. But we have entered history now," she wrote.